Looking for a thrilling, unique adventure as a college student? Try going down under! AIFS Abroad offers study and intern abroad programs in two cities in Australia on opposite sides of the continent, but both are bonzer (that’s Aussie slang for “excellent”) for students and professionals.
Here’s why Perth and Sydney are our favorite cities if you want to study or intern abroad in Australia.
Ranked one of the world’s most livable cities, Perth is perfect for students and interns for a lot of reasons. First of all, it’s affordable, even as the capital city of Western Australia. It also has an extensive transportation system so you can zip around town and to the beach.
Speaking of beaches, with eight hours of sunshine per day all year round, basically every season is beach season in Perth. If your primary reason to study abroad is to beat the cold, Perth ought to warm you right up. It’s literally called “the Sunset Coast”!
While many flock to the beaches, the inland is just as beautiful. The gorgeous Swan River is cherished by the local Aboriginal people and as you walk its trails you’ll see why. Fancy a walkabout? Perth is surrounded by hiking trails that have everything from prehistoric caves to ancient forests.
But you don’t have to walk too far to see a kangaroo! Heirisson Island is in the middle of Swan River and is hopping with the iconic creatures, plus an array of rare Australian-native birds.
Perth is increasingly known for its music and restaurants scenes, which draw from both its immigrant population and especially the Indigenous Australians, who boast the world’s oldest living culture.
Students and interns may want to check out Perth’s tech scene for future job opportunities, as it’s been a startup hub since the early 2000s. Introductions should be easy, as one of the big perks of studying abroad in Perth is that you don’t have to try and network in a whole new language.
Australia’s oldest and largest city, Sydney is also its most cosmopolitan and diverse. It’s truly a choose-your-own-adventure style city for students and interns alike, all while enjoying the year-round-gorgeous Australian weather, which is even sunnier than in Perth.
On that note, Sydney has its own beach scene with a wide variety of options. There are tons of beaches to explore in the surrounding area, but Bondi Beach is arguably the most frequented — and for good reason. There’s so much to do there! Not only can you soak up the sun and enjoy the ocean, but you’ll have access to amazing cafés, restaurants, and shops in the “Bondi Bubble.”
We might as well mention the obvious — the iconic Sydney Opera House (pictured above). Fun fact: it’s not just for opera! The facility is more of a small city for the performance arts where a wide variety of musical and non-musical events take place every day. You can even take a tour to learn all its backstage goings-on.
The surrounding area of Sydney is filled with sights that will have you saying “crikey!” From the Coogee Walk to the Blue Mountains, Sydney is a hiker’s paradise.
While Perth may have an island of kangaroos, Sydney has a stadium full of Wallabees. That’s the name of their rugby team, and Sydneysiders are very proud of them. Even if you’re not into rugby, or sports in general, it’s a can’t-miss experience that will instantly connect you with the city.
Sydney is also one of the most culturally diverse cities on the globe. In fact, nearly half of Sydneysiders were born outside of Australia. The city also hosts regional headquarters for numerous global companies and the Australian Stock Exchange. There are tons of networking and professional development opportunities across diverse fields.
Did we mention Sydney is the highest-ranking city in the world for international students? With more than 50,000 studying at the city’s many esteemed universities, there’s a high chance you’ll meet students from other programs and a variety of different countries, expanding your friend group and network.
If you fancy an adventure in one of the world’s most incredible cities, we suggest you choose Perth or Sydney for a study or intern abroad program in Australia.
Are you ready to start your own global education journey? Though they have different vibes, each of these cities in Australia will offer you a life-changing opportunity abroad.
PS: If you’re intrigued by the South Pacific, but not the big cities of Australia, consider a program in nearby Wellington, New Zealand.
Wellington is a smaller city, but it’s dense with stuff to do. You’ll have access to activities like hiking, whale watching, exotic bird watching, and exploring glow worm caves. It’s been called the “Coolest Little Capital” due to its welcoming nature and unique vibe. Plus, Middle-Earth heads might be interested to know its the home to Weta Workshop, the studio behind the Lord of the Rings films!